EPICURE

La D’Oro: A Japanese love affair with Italy

La D’Oro at Mandarin Gallery Singapore impresses with its opulent décor and captivating cuisine 

 

La D’Oro head chef Yohhei Sasaki

La D’Oro head chef Yohhei Sasaki

October 2022

Franco-Japanese cuisine is generally revered by gourmands and considered the synergistic culmination of two refined cooking styles. Think Michelin-starred examples like Rêve in Singapore and L’Effervescence in Tokyo.

On the other hand, Japanese-Italian fusion is usually perceived as less elegant and more often than not associated with less sophisticated eats like pasta and pizza. Not at La D’Oro, though.

This upscale restaurant at Mandarin Gallery not only looks the part with the requisite décor of dark stone and soft leather but also a glass-walled cellar of expensive wine.

On one side of the trophy bottles is a relatively open dining area with a bar in front – the casual side of La D’Oro. On the other side, up three thick carpeted steps through a sliding door, is its more exclusive alternative called La D’Oro Fine Dining – a more private space with counter seating and the personal attention of Chef Sasaki Yohhei.

La D’Oro Mandarin Gallery Singapore

La D’Oro Fine Dining’s omakase space

The good chef is no stranger to Singapore, having lived here for 11 years with stints at L’Operetta, Forlino and il Cielo. Before arriving in the Lion City, he worked in Ginza, Tokyo for six years, then in Tuscany, Italy for five years, immersing himself in Italian cuisine and all things Italia. So much so that he could pass for a bona fide Italiano except for the fact that his mamma mia is Nihonjin.

But it is his deep understanding of both cuisines and cultures that takes his gastronomic creations to a level way above mere fusion food.

There are two dinner menus – S$188 for five courses and S$258 for eight.

The latter starts with three snacks in a tall glass tower – a small croquette of snow crab crowned with caviar; anchovy and yuzu on bruschetta; and isaki or chicken grunt sashimi on a rice cracker.

On the side, Chef Sasaki serves freshly shaved Raspadura cheese curls – a bit like Parmigiano but milder in taste – to be nibbled on its own or atop walnut bread or brioche.

Next comes grilled mackerel on burrata sauce and ginger flower, smoked together with a pressed eggplant made to look like a leaf.

La D’Oro Mandarin Gallery Singapore

Wagyu carpaccio consommé

Even more interesting is the snow-aged A4 wagyu with porcini mushrooms – both in cream and powder form – and sprinkled with truffle. It is first eaten as is, then with the addition of wagyu consommé from a shot glass. 

Before you wonder about the Italian connection, up comes a quenelle of linguini topped with bafun uni or sea urchin for a rich and smooth segue into grilled tachiuo or belt fish with basil pesto and black garlic foam a la a traditional Trapanese sauce.

Then it’s the main course, with a choice of A5 wagyu and green apple sauce or duck breast with chanterelle mushroom and chestnut.

La D’Oro Mandarin Gallery Singapore

Chef special aglio olio

As in a typical Japanese meal that ends with some rice, there is also a carbo course at La D’Oro but with an intriguing twist – aglio olio that diners can select as a “20”, “30”, “50” or “100”.

The number chosen is actually the weight of the pasta in grams. It is served in a thick sauce, made from a reduction of chicken broth that combined French, black and Australian birds, and eaten with chopsticks (the way the chef ate it when he was working in Italy and didn’t have much money). This chef’s special is so deliciously and unctuously savoury that one regular customer orders it as a “200”.

Ending on a sweet note are two desserts – a sorbet made with the unthinkable combo of calamansi and Yamagata cola jelly, and Kyoho grapes with jackfruit espuma.

With a menu that is as inventive as it is refined, it won’t be long before La D’Oro raises the profile of Japanese-Italian cuisine and changes perceptions about it.  

MORE STORIES FROM NEW LUXURY

Hazuki: Over the moon at Ngee Ann City

Hazuki: Over the moon at Ngee Ann City

EPICUREHazuki: Over the moon at Ngee Ann City Enjoy refined Japanese fare at Hazuki restaurant in upmarket surroundings along Orchard Road  Chef Kenta Yamauchi of HazukiWander amidst the comfortably upscale atmosphere of Ngee Ann City in Singapore and you will...

Eshikoto: The sake that sparkles

Eshikoto: The sake that sparkles

EPICURE Eshikoto: The sake that sparkles Famed sake brewery Kokuryu unveils its first sparkling sake – Eshikoto  Eshikoto is Kokuryu's first awasake or sparkling sake The cult brewery from Fukui now has a special new sake and you could say it literally sparkles....

Jinhonten: Japanese fare with flair in Singapore

Jinhonten: Japanese fare with flair in Singapore

EPICUREJinhonten: Japanese fare with flair in Singapore Jinhonten at Shaw Centre is the newest kid on the Japanese restaurant block and it isn’t only fancy but its chef is also snazzy   Counter balance: Jinhonten’s decor is both traditional and modernWhat happens...

New Tokyo restaurant: Jinen.

New Tokyo restaurant: Jinen.

EPICURENew Tokyo restaurant: Jinen. Jinen. wows with European flavours and Japanese elegance in a stylish villa in Shibuya    Chef Kato Shoma and Chef Umino NaoyaWhile the rest of the world was stuck at home during the pandemic, it seems the Tokyo fine-dining...

Imamura: The culinary beacon on Sentosa

Imamura: The culinary beacon on Sentosa

EPICURE Imamura: Sentosa's culinary beacon Imamura is the latest Japanese restaurant in Singapore and the one that is raising the fine-dining barConsummate perfectionist: Chef Hirofumi ImamuraShiso is the fragrant perilla leaf that usually adorns a sashimi platter and...

Aoki: Singapore’s best value fine-dining sushi?

Aoki: Singapore’s best value fine-dining sushi?

EPICURE Aoki: Singapore's best value fine-dining sushi? There may be newer and fancier sushi restaurants with a star but they can’t beat Aoki Restaurant’s price-to-quality proposition   Chef Aoki Kunio with his ultra-luxe tray of tuna and Chef Ewan Soh As omakase...

Kakure: Classic Japanese bar in Singapore

Kakure: Classic Japanese bar in Singapore

EPICURE Kakure: A classic Japanese bar in Singapore The Bar Kakure in a black-and-white bungalow along Scotts Road serves Japanese-style cocktails with a tropical twist    The Bar Kakure's polished wooden counter with its picture window of lush greeneryIt’s...

Maiam Wines: Vin in a vial

Maiam Wines: Vin in a vial

EPICUREMaiam Wines: Vin in a vial For the sipper, Maiam Wines is a stylish Japanese company that offers classy flexibility with 100 ml glass bottles of French wine    Enjoy your wine 100 ml at a timeHave you ever hesitated before opening a bottle of wine...

Kappo cool: Taro Takayama

Kappo cool: Taro Takayama

EPICURE Kappo cool: Taro Takayama Takayama is the high-end kappo-style restaurant in Downtown Gallery at Shenton Way with a menu and atmosphere that will transport you to Japan     Chef Taro Takayama at his eponymous kappo restaurant in Downtown Gallery at...

Michelin-starred Kimura’s special sushi

Michelin-starred Kimura’s special sushi

EPICURE Michelin-starred Kimura's special sushi  Sushi Kimura stands out in the Singapore high-end sushi scene for its one Michelin star and unique ingredients     One Michelin-starred Sushi Kimura at Palais Renaissance, SingaporeUnless you’re a recluse who...

This 3 is tops

This 3 is tops

EPICURE This 3 is tops The Tengumai Kokoshu Junmai Daiginjo is a rare sake that has been matured for three years   A rare sake: Kokoshu is best savoured in glassware specially designed by the brewery owner By now, sake lovers would know that this so-called rice...

Southern and sophisticated

Southern and sophisticated

EPICURE Southern and sophisticatedSouthern Thai food has been elevated to new and refined heights at two of Bangkok’s coolest restaurants   Southern comfort: Escape into the cool interior of Saawaan  The mere mention of Southern Thai food may cause some people’s...

Old is gold

Old is gold

EPICURE Old is gold Up to seven years of ageing has made the Tengumai Ginkouburi a rare and complex sake     Tengumai Ginkouburi sake: A 35% Junmai Daiginjo aged for between five and seven years Young and fresh may trump old and mellow, not only when it...

Wowed by wagyu

Wowed by wagyu

EPICURE Wowed by wagyu in Yonezawa Take it from Animal Farm – not all types of Japanese beef are equal     Yummy Yonezawa: Beef from this town in Yamagata is tender and more importantly, tasty     There is beef, and then there is wagyu, or literally...

Soju so good

Soju so good

EPICURE Soju that's so good Premium Korean soju, not the cheap stuff, is perfect with barbecued or spicy food     The Hwayo range of soju There is a breathtaking Korean TV series called Bad Guys: Vile City, where the subtitle hints at some violently...

High steaks in Korea

High steaks in Korea

EPICURE High steaks in Korea Savour one of the best meat meals in Seoul on one of the four floors of the upmarket Born & Bred     Taste some of the best beef in Seoul at Born & Bred Tender, refined, juicy and oh so flavourful beef. Could we be...

Shichiken: The sparkling choice

Shichiken: The sparkling choice

EPICUREShichiken: The sparkling choice Shichiken Mori no Kanade is a special sparkling sake that is aged in whisky barrels Shichiken Mori no KanadeSometimes, you just can’t decide what you would like to drink at dinner. Wine or whisky? Sparkling or sake?  At times...

67 Pall Mall to open atop Shaw Centre

67 Pall Mall to open atop Shaw Centre

EPICURE 67 Pall Mall to open atop Shaw Centre Singapore will be the London private wine club’s first overseas location   Good food, great wine: The inviting interior of London’s 67 Pall Mall  Raise your glass to 67 Pall Mall.   The private wine club concept by...

Get fresh with Kokuryu Hiirazu

Get fresh with Kokuryu Hiirazu

EPICURE Get fresh with Kokuryu HiirazuThe unpasteurised Kokuryu Hiirazu: Any fresher and you’ll have to brew this namazake yourself  Kokuryu Hiirazu There’s nothing better than the freshness of a namazake to excite a jaded palate. Except when that nama is a...

Wine on the Wild Side

Wine on the Wild Side

EPICURE Wine on the wild side Enjoy the perfect combo of wildlife and fine wine at the Singita Lebombo Lodge in Kruger National Park    Singita Lebombo sommelier James Burnham-King Go camping and you won’t be surprised to find canned food and dry rations on the...

Top 3 modern Korean restaurants

Top 3 modern Korean restaurants

EPICURE Top 3 modern Korean restaurants Re-interpreted with style and stars, this is the best Seoul food of the fine-dining variety    Three Michelin-starred La Yeon's Mixed Rice with Vegetables and Abalone Feel like an avant garde version of bibimbap over that...

Secret delights of Nanpeidai

Secret delights of Nanpeidai

EPICURE The secret delights of Nanpeidai It may not be easy to find Restaurant Nanpeidai but it will be well worth your while    East meets west, Japanese-style, at Restaurant Nanpeidai Shibuya. This shopping and entertainment district in Tokyo has many...

45 Is The New 39… & 50

45 Is The New 39… & 50

EPICURE 45 Is The New 39… & 50 The new Dassai Sparkling 45 is the bubbly union of two sparkling sakes If at first you thought someone was playing an April Fool’s joke on you by messing about with the colours of your favourite sparkling sake from Dassai, you've...

Restaurant Zén

Restaurant Zén

EPICURE Restaurant Zén The Swede sensation called Frantzén comes to Singapore At: 41 Bukit Pasoh Road Street, tel 9236-6368 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 7pm-10.30pm F&B: There is only one word to describe Restaurant Zén and it is sensational. Not only because it is the...

Heston Blumenthal joins F1 Paddock Club

Heston Blumenthal joins F1 Paddock Club

EPICURE Heston Blumenthal Joins F1 Paddock Club Fat Duck chef to be part of race promoter S’pore GP’s culinary act First, there was Jean-Georges. Then came Nobu. Now, it’s going to be Heston.   This year’s celebrity chef at the Formula One Paddock Club is going to be...

Bak kwa Bounty

Bak kwa Bounty

EPICURE Bak Kwa Bounty When only Empire ultra-premium bak kwa is good enough for CNY So you’ve snagged that kilo of Lim Chee Guan for Chinese New Year and you’re mighty pleased with your prize.  After all, you’ll be serving your guests what is considered Singapore’s...

15 Stamford By Alvin Leung

15 Stamford By Alvin Leung

EPICURE 15 Stamford by Alvin Leung Flamboyant HK chef’s restaurant at Capitol Kempinski At: 48 The Capitol Kempinski Hotel, 15 Stamford Road, tel 6715-6871 Open: Daily, 12-3pm, 6-10.30pm F&B: Gimmicky, loquacious, blue hair.  It’s not difficult to say which is...

Teppan Kappou Kenji

Teppan Kappou Kenji

EPICURE Teppan Kappou Kenji Surprisingly satisfying Japanese restaurant in Tanjong Pagar At: 99 Tanjong Pagar Road, #01-01, tel 9152-3118 Open: Daily, 11.30am-2pm, 6pm-10.30pm F&B: There are two interesting things to note about Teppan Kappou Kenji. The first is...

The Wine & Gourmet Friends

The Wine & Gourmet Friends

EPICURE The Wine & Gourmet Friends Beverage-focused casual eatery with affordable wines At: 48 Bukit Pasoh Road, tel 6224-1982 Open: Daily, 12pm-11pm F&B: If you are the sort who is less about “food and wine’’ and more into “wine and food’’, then The Wine &...

Preludio

Preludio

EPICURE Preludio European restaurant’s black & white theme is a grey area At: #03-01/02 Frasers Tower, tel 6904-5686 Open: Monday-Saturday, 11.30am-2.30pm, 6pm-10.30pm F&B: Just as the dictum “Location, location, location’’ applies to property, “Shophouse good,...

Bacchanalia

Bacchanalia

EPICURE Bacchanalia French restaurant in a shophouse near Chinatown At: 39 Hongkong Street, tel 6909-6360 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 12pm-2.30pm, 6.30pm-10pm F&B: When it comes to a restaurant located in a traditional shophouse, there’s so much to appreciate than...

Restaurant Zén

Restaurant Zén

EPICURE Restaurant Zén The stylish Swedish restaurant adds a charming conservatory At: 41 Bukit Pasoh Road, tel 9236-6368 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 7-10.30pm F&B: That sensational new restaurant on Bukit Pasoh has a stylish new feature - a charming conservatory. ...

Gake

Gake

EPICURE Gake Japanese-inspired cuisine by a Singaporean chef At: 36 Carpenter Street, #01-01, tel 6781-3603 Open: Monday-Saturday, 5pm-12am F&B: Gake is the latest Japanese-themed restaurant at this end of South Bridge Road, where a few local chefs have found a...

Restaurant Ibid

Restaurant Ibid

EPICURE Restaurant Ibid MasterChef Asia winner fuses East and West What: Nanyang-style cuisine At: 18 North Canal Road, tel 9151-8698 Open: Monday-Saturday, 6.30-10pm F&B: Woo Wai Leong is the winner of MasterChef Asia 2015 and his new restaurant certainly lives...

Magic Square

Magic Square

EPICURE Magic Square Portsdown pop-up with 3 young chefs What: Communal dining by Naked Finn owner At: 5B Portsdown Road, tel 8181-0102 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 6-8pm and 8.15-10.15pm F&B: Naked Finn owner Tan Ken Loon has created a year-long platform to support...

Ganglamedo

Ganglamedo

EPICURE Chengdu Spicy satisfaction What: Mid-range Sichuan restaurant  At: 74 Amoy Street, tel 6221-9928 Open: Monday-Saturday, 11.30am-2.30pm, 5.30-10pm  F&B: Don’t mind new tastes and sensations or a bit of a culture shock when dining out? Then Chengdu should be...

Chengdu

Chengdu

EPICURE Chengdu Spicy satisfaction What: Mid-range Sichuan restaurant  At: 74 Amoy Street, tel 6221-9928 Open: Monday-Saturday, 11.30am-2.30pm, 5.30-10pm  F&B: Don’t mind new tastes and sensations or a bit of a culture shock when dining out? Then Chengdu should be...

Madame Fan

Madame Fan

EPICURE Madame Fan Luxe dining at the NCO Club What: High-end Chinese restaurant  At: 32 Beach Road, tel 6818-1921 Open: Tuesday-Sunday, 12-3pm, 6-11pm  F&B: There’s good news and there’s bad news at this revitalised end of Beach Road.  The good news is that after...

Famous Treasure

Famous Treasure

EPICURE Famous Treasure Zhi char restaurant goes upmarket What: Local favourites at Capitol Piazza At: 13 Stamford Road, #02-28, tel 6881-6668 Open: Daily, 11.30-2.30pm, 6-10.30pm  F&B: With a name like Famous Treasure, you can be forgiven for wondering if it...

House of Mu

House of Mu

EPICURE House Of Mu Simple but satisfying What: Affordable Western fare with comprehensive bar At: 11 Mohamed Sultan Road, tel 6732-1011 Open: Tuesday-Thurs & Sunday, 12-10.30pm; Fri & Sat 12pm-2am  F&B: Mu may be the 12th letter of the Greek alphabet but...

IL DEN

IL DEN

EPICURE IL DEN Hole-in-the-wall with whole food What: One-man show starring Japanese-inspired Italian fare  At: #04-21 Orchard Plaza, 150 Orchard Road, tel 9117-1791 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 6-11pm F&B: Young people have lots of energy to do lots of stuff that OGs...

Atout

Atout

EPICURE Atout Classic French fare with delicious charcuterie What: French bistro At: 40C Harding Road, tel 6679-1800 Open: Monday-Saturday, 11.30am-10pm F&B: “Atout’’ is French for “trump card’’ and this restaurant amid the lush greenery and tranquil surroundings...

Takayama

Takayama

EPICURE Takayama Japanese food with some “entertainment” What: High-End Kappo At: Downtown Gallery #01-09/10, 6A Shenton Way, tel 6224-0864 Open: Monday-Friday, 12-2.30pm, 6.30-10pm; Saturday, 6.30-10pm; Closed Sunday & public holidays F&B: Takayama is an...

Gyu Bar

Gyu Bar

EPICURE Gyu Bar Grill your own Japanese beef What: Yakiniku and bibimbap restaurant At: 30 Stevens Road, #01-08, tel 6732-0702 Open: Tuesday-Sunday, 12-3pm, 6-10pm F&B: The stylishly appointed Gyu Bar beside the Novotel and Mercure hotels On Stevens is the latest...

Salted Plum

Salted Plum

EPICURE Salted Plum Night market nibbles What: Taiwanese street food reinterpreted At: 10 Circular Road, tel 6260-0155 Open: Monday-Saturday, 12-3pm, 6-10pm F&B: No, Salted Plum is not a snack shop selling sng boey but rather a casual restaurant featuring...

Tablescape

Tablescape

EPICURE Tablescape “Grand” and good value What: Hotel restaurant and bar At: Grand Park City Hall, 10 Coleman Street, Level 3, tel 6432-5618 Open: Daily, 12-2.30pm, 6-10.30pm F&B: This hotel at the corner of Hill and Coleman streets seems to get overlooked but now...

Majestic

Majestic

EPICURE Majestic Chinese chic What: Stylish Chinese restaurant At: Marina One, 5 Straits View, #04-01 (East Tower), tel 6250-1988 Open: Daily, 11.30am-3pm, 5.45-10pm F&B: Throw out any old ideas you had of the “Majestic’’ name and embrace its chic new look at the...

Kimme

Kimme

EPICURE Kimme Trendy K-food What: Modern Asian restaurant At: 47 Amoy Street, tel 6514-1588 Open: Monday-Saturday, 12-2.30pm, 5.30-11pm F&B: It may be a fine-dining modern Asian restaurant but the communal table in front of the kitchen might make you think twice,...

665° F

665° F

EPICURE 665° F High steaks What: Steakhouse with a view At: Level 38, Andaz Hotel, 5 Fraser Street, tel 6408-1255 Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 6-10pm F&B: Two things should strike you when you sit at your table in the dim but stylish room designed like a gentlemen’s...

Hua Ting

Hua Ting

EPICURE Hua Ting Classy Chinese What: Refined Chinese restaurant At: Orchard Hotel, tel 6739-6666 Open: Daily, 11.30am-2.30pm, 6-10.30pm F&B: This stylish Chinese restaurant at the Orchard Hotel has re-opened after extensive renovations lasting three-and-a-half months...

Kyuu

Kyuu

EPICURE Kyuu For your sake What: Japanese restaurant specialising in robatayaki At: 29 Keong Saik Rd, tel 6221-7098 Open: Tuesday-Sunday, 6pm-midnight; Monday closed F&B: The 10-course omakase menu for S$129 is fairly reasonably priced, with some nice seafood...

Wakanui

Wakanui

EPICURE Wakanui The beefy difference What: Steakhouse with NZ and Japanese meat At: Marina One, 5 Straits View, #04-02, tel 6384-2665 Open: Monday-Friday, 11.30am-3pm and 5.30-11pm; Saturday, 11.30am-3pm; Sunday closed F&B: The menu offers a Japanese appetiser,...

Quick Links
Follow Us

                

Copyright ©2019 NEW LUXURY. All Rights Reserved.